April 5, 2022

TAG Today - March 2022




Earlier this month, TAG announced a record number of certified companies and seals in 2022, as the digital advertising industry continued to close ranks against new and emerging threats in fraud, malware, and brand safety. 

This year, 231 TAG certified member companies have been awarded 313 TAG seals across TAG’s Certified Against Fraud, Certified Against Malware, and Brand Safety Certified Programs with a large majority of recertified seals (62%) awarded through independent validation. 

"As the digital advertising industry continues to evolve, so do the criminal activities taking place in our ecosystem,” said Mike Zaneis, CEO of TAG. "TAG and our member companies have worked tirelessly to establish and maintain best-in-class global standards that protect the industry from potentially harmful threats around fraud, malware, and brand safety. We commend the companies who have obtained TAG Certification for 2022, and we look forward to working with them to build even greater success for our industry this year.”

In addition to the individual seal awards, a record 15 companies achieved TAG Platinum status,  which is awarded to those who successfully earn all three of TAG’s certification seals – an 11% increase in Platinum companies from 2021. Those companies are AdForm, Amazon Advertising, AT&T, Google, Index Exchange, IPONWEB, Kroger, Magnite, MobileFuse, OpenX, Publicis Groupe, Sovrn, Spectrum Reach, The Trade Desk, and Xandr.

For a full list of companies achieving TAG Certification for 2022, please visit the TAG website.



At Brand Safety Summit Asia in Singapore, TAG released the results of the third-annual TAG Asia-Pacific Fraud Snapshot, highlighting the industry’s continued success in fighting Invalid Traffic (IVT) in TAG Certified Channels. 

Conducted by The 614 Group, the snapshot found a record-low 0.37% percent rate for invalid traffic in TAG Certified channels, where multiple supply chain participants have achieved the TAG Certified Against Fraud Seal, across eight major markets in the Asia-Pacific region. In Non-Certified Channels (NCC), the rate was more than 2.5 times higher. 


“Ad fraud criminals search for weaknesses in the supply chain to exploit, so our industry’s continued success in fighting fraud depends on broad participation by companies around the world at every step in those ad transactions,” said Nick Stringer, TAG’s VP Global Engagement and Operations. “This study shows once again that – because having multiple TAG Certified participants in a transaction safeguards ad spend from fraud so effectively – every company that earns the TAG Certified Against Fraud Seal effectively reduces fraud for both their customers and their supply chain partners, thus ensuring broader protection across the industry.”

The 614 Group study measured invalid traffic (IVT) rates in TAG Certified Channels by analyzing 158 billion ad impressions from January to December 2021 from three of the largest advertising agency holding companies across Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. The number of impressions measured increased nearly 59% from the 99.7 billion measured in 2021.

In addition to the Asia Pacific nations involved this year’s, TAG is in discussion with China Advertising Association (CAA) to expand its analysis to include the Chinese market next year. 

The full 2022 TAG Asia Pacific Fraud Snapshot can be found here



IAB GCC + TAG: In November 2021, IAB GCC, ABG and TAG established an alliance to bring TAG standards in the Gulf region of the Middle East. In this YouTube conversation, TAG's Nick Stringer and IAB's Ian Manning talk about the partnership and efforts to expand TAG standards across the region.





Brand Safety Summit London: Adrian Lacey, TAG’s Director of Policy and Standards, joined Justin Pearse of BlueStripe Group and Anthony Crocker of The Telegraph at Brand Safety Summit London on March 24th to discuss whether war-related topics are brand safe for marketers.





UK at SXSW: TAG CEO Mike Zaneis joined Brian O’Kelley of Scope 3, Amy Yeung of Lotame, and Tim Brown of Fiducia to discuss TAG TrustNet on a panel at #UKatSXSW focused on “Trust is the new currency – self-regulate or bust!”





Brand Safety Summit Asia: Nick Stringer, TAG’s Vice President of Global Engagement and Operations, shared the results of the 2022 TAG Asia-Pacific Fraud Snapshot on stage at Brand Safety Summit Asia from Singapore on March 17th.




1) What is your role at TAG?

I head up TAG’s engagement with the Asia-Pacific, Middle East, and Africa regions, where we are working with existing and new companies and partnering with trade bodies to establish a consistent approach to tackling criminal activity and promoting brand safety, based upon TAG’s standards. But we also want this approach to be right for the local markets. We call this ‘Global Standards for Local Markets,’ and I would love to hear from companies who are involved in TAG and can put me in touch with their colleagues in other markets.


2) What stands out to you about the work you do or have done at TAG? 

Working with so many different people and cultures across the world: the industry challenges are the same, but often the approach is nuanced. TAG has made a lot of progress in countries such as China and Japan. Everyone is very keen to work together regardless of the cultural and language differences / barriers.


3) What fun fact (or facts!) about you would surprise your TAG friends and colleagues? 

I’m a mad Liverpool FC football fan (that’s soccer to US folk!) In itself this won’t surprise friends and colleagues, but I love travelling around the world and meeting other zealous Liverpool fans! And on a more serious note, we can get so much done and achieve great things if we put our differences behind us and recognise we have a shared goal.


From “MMP World Wide becomes the first local marketplace in GCC to Join the Trustworthy Accountability Group” in Campaign Middle East:  

MMP World Wide (MMPWW), an adtech solutions provider, became the first local marketplace in the GCC [Gulf Cooperation Council] region to join the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG). The move comes as the company doubles down on its commitment to tackling criminal activity and promoting brand safety in digital advertising across the market.

Achieving TAG certification will help MMPWW to better combat ad fraud and malvertising, as well as minimizing the risk of ad misplacement. TAG’s standards are delivering significant value by ensuring companies are able to conduct business with legitimate partners, differentiate its inventory as trustworthy and ensure its brand is not damaged by fraud, piracy or malware.

MMP World Wide CEO, Ayman Haydar, says: “We all need to be accountable for how we interact and transact online today. The digital advertising landscape is complex, which is why we need universal standards to ensure we minimize risk and ensure legitimacy with every ad placement.”


From “Battling Ad Fraud – TAG, You’re It” by Chris Ferhmann, VP, Digital Products at TEGNA, in Cynopsis:

Fortunately, there are steps advertisers and media agencies can take to help mitigate and/or eliminate the effects of ad fraud on ROAS and business outcomes.

Being proactive is your first step to combating fraud. Choose your partners judiciously and vet their solutions with a microscope. Choose agencies, media buying companies, and technology providers that have purposeful processes and accreditations that combat fraud. This is where certifications such as the TAG Certified Against Fraud seal and MRC Accreditation take out the guesswork. Ensure that your partners have dedicated processes, technology partners, and requisite training to stop fraud before it starts. …

Earning the TAG Certified Against Fraud certification with the Trustworthy Accountability Group, the leading global initiative fighting criminal activity and increasing trust in the digital advertising industry, further underscores our dedication to this commitment to our advertisers. This partnership validates what we have been doing from the onset, providing a brand-safe, fraud-free environment that delivers business outcomes for our advertisers.


One more thing...

🧑🏻‍💻👨🏼‍💻👩🏽‍💻 - Leverage TAG Research into Your Everyday!

From APAC Fraud Snapshot reports, to UK Brand Safety Consumer reports, to Best Practices whitepapers, TAG's research is here to support our member's day-to-day compliance as well as strategic planning. 

Visit our Data and Insight page 👉 tagtoday.net/insights

📣📣📣 - Let's Make Some Noise Together 🤝

We love it when TAG members highlight our work together to fight digital ad crime and improve transparency. Please send any TAG-related press releases, blogs, or other announcements to Andrew Weinstein at andrewwstn@gmail.com for review before release.


Topics: Blog